Book One of the Follies Quartet: In an empty theatre at the end of the pier the cast of the Fairbourne Follies gathers round the radio to hear Neville Chamberlain declare war on Germany. Four firm friends are forced to part. Rose, the beautiful dancer, must return to her family in London, leaving singer Richard to enlist in the army with their relationship still unresolved. Gay, asthmatic Merry, the musical director, is destined for the army too, while the object of his unrequited love, charismatic magician Felix, chooses the RAF. The Nazi war machine is fast and merciless and soon all of them find themselves in terrible danger. As they are struck by the brutality of war they realise who is most important to them. Despite the odds, they determine to find each other again. With the threat of capture, injury and death ever present, the four will have to find reserves of courage, love and endurance they did not know they possessed.